Radrizzani sums up in four words Heckingbottom's view on Orta influence at Leeds
By Richard Parks
Leeds United owner Andrea Radrizzani has revealed to the Yorkshire Evening Post that new manager Paul Heckingbottom is content at the influence of Victor Orta at the club.
The Spanish director of football has attracted strident criticism from supporters on social media and forums for a transfer policy that has had mixed results since he arrived days after Radrizzani took sole control last May.
Orta spearheaded a signing blitz of 16 senior arrivals last summer that was supplemented in January by the captures of Adam Forshaw, Laurens De Bock, Tyler Roberts and Yosuke Ideguchi.
The not insignificant cost of the winter signings, with the quartet costing a combined £10million-plus, in addition to a dizzying number of players recruited for the development squad, has formed the perception of a scattergun approach from Orta that has failed to pay any obvious dividends.
It is a view that Radrizzani does not subscribe to, as he defended the role of Orta and explained that Heckingbottom fully accepts the structure in place following the torrent of criticism from fans.
“I don’t accept that,” Radrizzani to the Yorkshire Evening Post. “I’m very happy with my management, both Angus (Kinnear, Leeds’ managing director) and Victor. I’m happy with the players. If we should crucify everyone for a mistake, this club would never go where it should go.
“Continuity is very important. We have an example at Brighton. That is my model, my model to follow.
“There is no problem in the structure. Victor is not interfering in the management of the football side. His main activity is to focus on the football structure, including the academy, and improve it with signings.”
Asked how Leeds’ new manager Heckingbottom feels about Orta’s influence, Radrizzani delivered a four-word reply to the newspaper, “Paul is quite happy.”
Real Madrid academy product Saiz has arguably been Leeds’ outstanding player this season after being prised from Spanish second-tier side Huesca for a fee of around £3million.
Another 2017 summer capture Ezgjan Alioski has played more matches than any other United player in the 2017-18 Championship although his performances have not always convinced supporters.
Others have not fared as well as the attacking midfield duo, with the likes of Mateusz Klich, Jay-Roy Grot and Pawel Cibicki struggling to make an impact for former manager Thomas Christiansen, while domestic loan recruits such as Matthew Pennington, Andy Lonergan and Cameron Borthwick-Jackson have also failed to live up to expectations.
In other Leeds United news, it has been confirmed that the club have tabled a mega bid for a goal-a-game international striker amid a series of “extraordinary offers”.
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